However, organizations such as the Human Rights in China group say they doubt Beijing's resolve to improve its rights record. Nicolas Bequelin at the group's Hong Kong office says the government's definition of food and shelter as human rights is a narrow one. He says compliance with the terms of international rights accords has been uneven.
"When it is favorable to the government of China to appear to be engaging with the human rights mechanism, they are doing it," said Mr. Bequelin. "At other times, when it is convenient and whenever they want to avoid public criticism of their human rights record, they retract to this narrow definition."